January 20, 2006

A Thin Read

I'm underimpressed by Frank Gannon's "Midlife Irish", at least with respect of to his view of Catholicism. It seems "Catholic Lite", no more rich and capable of transforming us than a lite beer is able to satisfy the beer afficiando's palate.

This version appears stripped of the miraculous, indeed of grace itself. Gannon pooh-poohs the idea that St. Patrick performed anything other than "magic", all the stuff of legend, but will he extend that to the apostles in the Book of Acts where a dead man was raised, or to the miracle stories of Christ himself?

It was Archbishop Sheen who said the systematic weakening of Christianity has occurred in two distinct phases:
  • Denial (at the time of the Reformation) of the miraculous in the current Church, such as with respect to the Real Presence in the Eucharist

  • Denial (with the 19th century German scholars) that the miraculous happened in the early church or in the gospels

  • First undermine the visible Church and then the visible Scriptures. You're left with a pale version of Christ who was merely an itinerant preacher, not the Son of God Himself.

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